Entertainment

Comics that caused controversy

By Henry Hanks, CNN

Updated 10:35 AM ET, Wed July 29, 2015
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Oh, no! Will Superman's secret be broadcast to the world? In the new "Superman" comic, out July 29, Lois Lane figures out who's behind Clark Kent's glasses. It's a curious turn for the legendary comic -- and it's not the only one that's risked fan complaints with a twist. Click through for others. John Romita, Jr./DC Entertainment
When the relaunched "Spider-Man" hits comic book stores this fall, the half-black, half-Latino Miles Morales will have moved from Marvel Comics' "Ultimate" series to replace Peter Parker in the main "Spider-Man" series. Marvel
Archie Comics has revealed that beloved character Archie Andrews will die in "Life with Archie" No. 36 in July. The "Life with Archie" series tells stories of future scenarios for Archie and his friends in Riverdale. The present-day Archie stories will not be affected. Archie Comics
The 700th and final issue of "Amazing Spider-Man" shook the Spidey-verse to its foundations. Even before the issue was released, some fans were up in arms on social media. The firestorm erupted after Marvel revealed that Spider-Man's alter ego, Peter Parker, would die and that the role of Spider-Man would be taken over by his archenemy, Doctor Octopus, in a new series called "The Superior Spider-Man." mr. garcin/marvel comics
So much for the famous romance between Superman and Lois Lane. The Man of Steel sought solace in the arms of Wonder Woman starting in 2012's "Justice League" No. 12, potentially turning the League on its head. It was just the latest major change after DC Comics (owned by Time Warner, which owns CNN) hit a reset button of sorts a year earlier, relaunching and revising its famous characters in the "New 52."
In "Earth Two" No. 2, released in 2012, Alan Scott, the first Green Lantern, was reintroduced as a gay man. The hoopla around the revelation was criticized by some as "exploitation." Nicola Scott/Trevor Scott/DC Comics
DC's decision to release a series of prequels to the classic "Watchmen" (under the branding "Before Watchmen") caused a heated debate in early 2012. The original's writer, Alan Moore, described the move as "completely shameless." He said, "I don't want money. What I want is for this not to happen." darwyn cooke/dc comics
Buffy Summers decided to terminate her pregnancy in the sixth and seventh issues of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Season 9" in 2011. Abortion is not a topic discussed very often in comics, and the storyline received a good deal of attention online and in the media. georges jeanty/dark horse comics
After Superman took the side of Iranian dissidents in 2011's "Action Comics" No. 900, he decided to renounce his American citizenship because he did not want his actions to be seen as U.S. policy. The pre-"New 52" story was criticized, especially considering his old slogan was "Truth, justice and the American way."
Captain America's (aka Steve Rogers') assassination, seen as symbolic of attitudes toward the U.S. at the time, was the most talked-about comic book storyline in 2007. "Captain America" No. 25 sold through the roof after the story received huge media attention. Cap returned in 2009, but not before his former sidekick Bucky Barnes (who himself was believed to be dead for decades) took charge of the famous mask and shield.
Marvel Comics admitted that a lettering error caused a group of protesters to be identified as members of the tea party movement in a scene from "Captain America" No. 602 in 2010. Marvel corrected any future reprints of the story, but conservatives especially criticized the issue.
Batman alter ego Bruce Wayne's back was broken by the villainous Bane in 1993's "Knightfall" storyline. This led to "Knightquest," in which Jean-Paul Valley took over as the new Batman. Slowly, it became apparent to readers that the unstable Jean-Paul went too far as Batman, at one point letting one of his enemies die. Readers' angry letters were featured in the "Batman" comic books at this time. It turned out that readers were never supposed to like Jean-Paul. A rehabilitated Bruce returned in "KnightsEnd" and outwitted Jean-Paul into giving up the role of Batman.
Starting in 1994, the multiyear "Clone Saga" shook Spider-Man fans to the core, as it was revealed that Peter Parker had been a clone all along, and his entire life was a lie (the seeds for which were planted over 20 years before). Ben Reilly took over as the new Spider-Man, and a large number of readers revolted. By 1996, Peter was restored as Spider-Man.
Back in "Batman," the second Robin, Jason Todd, died in 1988 after fans were asked to vote over the phone to determine his fate. Todd was seen for well over a decade as the one dead character who would never return. But in 2005, "Under the Hood" reintroduced Jason as the Red Hood, and Jason is now a regular character with his own comic book series.
Peter Parker's then-girlfriend, Gwen Stacy, was murdered by the Green Goblin in 1973's "Amazing Spider-Man" No. 121. At the time, it was the most controversial comic book story ever. Writer Gerry Conway said fans continued to criticize and reference the story decades after it was published, but he has never regretted it, since it allowed Peter to be with his true love, Mary Jane Watson.
Captain America's sidekick Bucky Barnes died near the end of World War II. But that didn't stop Marvel Comics from bringing him back as an almost-unrecognizable character named Winter Soldier (the subtitle of the second "Captain America" movie). lee bermejo/marvel comics